Saturday, May 31, 2008
Friday, May 30, 2008
Thursday, May 29, 2008
Monday, May 26, 2008
Sunday, May 25, 2008
Since I was a little frustrated with my earlier time trial by dog ride, I decided I needed a few more relaxing miles. Just to set the tone for this post let it be known I love animals and never like to see one get hurt, injured or killed, that is unless I'm out hunting them.
I decided after lunch to take an easy spin out to Mulberry Point and back a route I knew I wouldn't have any dog problems on (see previous post). As I headed out of Vermillion on the business route of Hwy 50 I was just reaching the area where road crews are widening the shoulder of the road. The shoulder right now is not there if fact if you cross the white line your in for about a 2 foot drop off. Knowing this I moved over to the shoulder on the other side of the road as I felt it was the safest place for me to be. Just as I did this I noticed a mini van coming toward me. As I was watching the van approach a black cat darted out of the ditch in front of the van and got smoked. I felt sick to my stomach seeing this happened several hundred yards in front of me and thought about stopping to try to help the poor thing. It did several flops and circles around the road and then disappeared into the ditch. I really did not want to start tromping around the ditch in waist high grass looking for an injured cat, who I knew by watching him get hit wouldn't make it anyway, so I decided to continue on. Just as I came to the spot of cat vs van all of a sudden a black streak comes flying out of the ditch and hits my front tire. It just about causes me to go down and almost launches me into on coming traffic. I stop regroup, check for bike damage and do a quick scan for the cat. It had disappeared again. How and why the cat did not end up in my spokes I don't know, but am very fortunate. Needless to say a very strange day of riding.
Reminder to self: Increase life insurance amount tomorrow.
Shortly after leaving Vermillion and turning onto Bluff road I noticed a tan spot in the middle of the road about 1/2 a mile ahead. I figured it was a deer, I was wrong, instead it was a deer sized dog. He was trotting along in the passing lane going the same direction as me. As I approached he glanced back at me a couple of times but made no attempt to turn, growl or give me any need for fear. That is until I was next to him. He lunged at me just as I pulled up next to him, I stood up and hammered the pedals as hard as I could, he gave chase. I yelled at him as I gave it my all to put a gap between us, he kept coming. After an 1/2 mile of me running about 28 mph he gave up. My heart was ready to explode. I thought to myself why didn't I grab my Halt spray before I left the house.
I continued on. The next place that is always known for dogs along this loop was just a couple of miles ahead. These dogs usually run up the the side of the road and stop at that, not today. As I approached the farm place I could see the 3 mutts lying in the yard. I thought to myself it's my lucky day, they are sleeping and won't even bother, I was wrong again. Just as I was even with the farm place they came with all they had. I had a good jump but they had good traction in the grass and gained on me quickly. Once they hit the road I could hear the claws sliding across the pavement trying to gain on me. Once again I hammered and hammered hard, they chased for almost a mile.
I recovered a bit and headed on. I was just coming up on a farm place with a large feed lot, I have never noticed a dog at this place but guess what, out of the ditch comes another dang dog. He had much smaller legs and I didn't have to hammer as hard to stay ahead of him but he followed me for 2 miles.
By this time I haven't even ridden 10 miles and have been chased by 5 dogs. If you have ever ridden the Meckling loop you know whats next. The school house with the 2 Rotts. These are well behaved dogs and I have never had a problem with them. As I roll up about a 1/4 mile away from the school house, what happens. The Rotts come out of the ditch by the driveway, each one stands in a lane on the road and face me. They have NEVER done this to me before, I look around for the owner, as they are usually outside with the dogs, no owner is to be found. I did the only thing I could think of, I turned around. I figured it was better to back track and take my chances with the 5 dogs who probably at best might knock me over and maul me slightly rather than tangle with 2 Rotts that would eat me and still be hungry.
I did make it home. Only 4 dogs to out run on the way home and they were tired because they all had had a early morning work out thanks to yours truly. My easy 30 mile ride turned into 20 mile time trial thanks to every dog in Clay county wanting a piece of me.
Thursday, May 22, 2008
Sunday, May 18, 2008
At 8:00 I arrived at Bunyan's, being the first one there I went for a quick spin around the neighborhood. By 8:15 rollers began to arrive and we settled into bar stools to await the 9:00 start time. In the mean time beer was drank, conversation was had and ceiling tiles were signed.
Ceiling Tiles Signed?? Bunyan's has started a tradition of signing their removable ceiling tiles. The Bunyan's to Bob's ride has it's own tile and was signed by all the riders, look for pictures on other blogs, I'm sure it will show up.
At 9:00 we were ready to roll, and roll we did with a brisk wind at our back we quickly made it to the bridge where we lost those crazy mountain bikers. Good time was made. We were easily rolling at about 22-24 mph with the ever increasing wind at our back. We pulled into Ponca and the group I was with decided on a quick pit stop. The small gas station/lumber yard/farm supply store had Orange Crush soda in a glass bottle, we couldn't resist. After downing our Orange Crush we were out the door with thoughts of burgers running through our brains. The last 7 miles into Martinsburg were a bit more of a challenge but only a small taste of the pain we would get to experience on the way home.
We made our way into Martinsburg and rode up to Bob's bar, the bar with no beer. The no beer was probably a good thing as we would need all the water we could partake of for the ride home. Burgers, cheeseballs and fries were ordered. The pyramid of cheeseballs arrived first, one order easily taking care of the 9 people at our table. Next it was the burgers or should I say sides of beef on a bun. The burger itself is right around 6 to 7 inches across the bun it about 3 to 4 inches across, meaning you eat about a pound of beef before you even get to the bun. It really isn't a bun but a beef delivery system. Much food was consumed, we would need every calorie of it as the worst wind I have ridden in for quite some time was soon to greet us.
Rollers left Martinsburg a bit spread out but we all soon grouped up at the gas station in Ponca. A pace line of around 10 rollers left Ponca and headed off to do battle with the wind. A 12 to 14 mph pace was established by Travis K. who would pull us all the way to Newcastle. Thanks again Travis. As I glanced back our pace line was beginning to fall apart the wind was knocking people out left and right. What was a nice long pace line soon dwindled down to 5 rollers. Finally we made Newcastle were we found air conditioning and a wonderfully nice poppy selling lady at the local gas station. Poppies were purchased and the cool air was enjoyed.
After Newcastle our pace line was thinned even more, now the group I was in was down to the kErnEl, the Muscle and myself. We decided to try to hold on to our 12 mph average and made our way out of town. About 2 miles out we heard a loud pop or bang, the Muscle's derailleur had exploded, pieces parts where everywhere. A call was made to Laura, the emergency sag driver, and a Muscle rescue was on the way. The kErnEl and I waited for the rescue wagon and what once was a 10 person pace line was now down to 2.
The kErnEl and I battled the wind together and caught up with Ed F., The Mayor and Evie. They had passed us while we were picking up the pieces of the Muscle's ride. We stopped at the Dakota Street corner to group up, have a drink and ride the last few miles in together. We finally made it back into Vermillion. The beer never tasted so good.
Looking back at the ride the only thing I can think of is.....
WHEN CAN WE DO IT AGAIN
Friday, May 16, 2008
Wednesday, May 14, 2008
Sunday, May 11, 2008
I discussed with my fan club (that would be my 2 kids) on how far and where I should ride. They had lots of ideas, here are a few, Sioux Falls and back, Kentucky, North Carolina, China and of course around the world. All sound like fun rides but with a 3 hour time frame not very likely.
I sent out an email to the Lane Hogs to see if I could get some company. I didn't think it was very likely as Mother's day and many graduation activities are going on. Needless to say I didn't have any takers on the ride so it was solo for me.
I headed out of Vermillion at 1:30 the temp was 55 and the wind out of the NNW at 9-10 mph. It was clear and sunny though and a beautiful day to be out on the bike. I set in at my, happy I can ride all day pace, which is 15 to 16 mph and headed out. The first 30 miles flew by, I felt great, better than I expected so I decided to keep going. After another 8 miles or so I started feeling not so good. I realized the temp had continued to climb and I had not taken off enough layers to keep myself cool. I stopped, lost a couple of layers of cloths, sat for a bit, drank a whole water bottle and decided I was feeling a little better. The last 8 miles was a little rough, my stop and attempt at refueling with water didn't make up for my overheating. Anyways I made it home and it took me 2 full beers before I felt better. A nice day and a nice 45 miles regardless.
Monday, May 5, 2008
Friday I got off work about 2:00 P.M. and made my way home and did a bit of house cleaning. We were going to be gone most of the weekend and had a baby-sitter scheduled for Friday night so I tried to pick up the house a bit.
Friday night the Mrs and I were off to her dept banquet. It was a fun night I even got to present a fellowship award (scholarship) to a student. I was given the honor as I'm one of the newest Scottish Rite members in the state of South Dakota. After the banquet it was off to Carey's for some liquid refreshments. I walked in the door of Carey's bar and who was sitting there drinking a beer, none other than NBA star Mike Miller. He is a close friend of one of the Mrs co-workers husband, so anyway now I can say I had a beer with a NBA player.
Saturday it was off to my big sister place in Omaha for a Disney planning session. We discussed and drew up Disney plans for several hours, hopefully having a good plan in place will help eliminate some confusion when we finally get to Disney.
Sunday we made our way home from Omaha and arrived back in Vermillion around noon. After unpacking we planted the rest of our garden. Beans, peas, onions, carrots, sweet corn and pumpkins were planted. This is our first attempt at a garden so hopefully we will see some good results from the work. After garden planting the Mrs took the kids to run up and down Spirit Mound and I stayed home and sat on the lawn mower.
Overall a very busy and tiring weekend, unfortunately looking a the schedule for this week finding time to ride is going to be a challenge, but it will be done. The Mrs has a very busy week finishing up classes for the year and I have several meetings I have promised to attend.